God help him. Really! Earlier this week, Father Leo Patalinghug was summoned to Mount St. Mary’s University in Emmittsburg for a taping by the Food Network. He didn’t know any details. Then, the celebrity chef star of "Throwdown with Bobby Flay" was standing next to him.
But, first, some background on Father Leo. This Baltimore priest is a foodie who developed a program, Grace Before Meals, which encourages families to have meals together to strengthen their relationships. It’s become a worldwide movement leading to a book, blog, and pilot for a TV show.
Father Leo, who was born in the Philippines and raised in Maryland, is also a member of the faculty at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary, where he directs the pastoral field education program for future priests.
The priest, who is as comfortable in a collar as an apron, developed his love for cooking while attending the seminary in Rome. He became friendly with several Italian restaurant owners and soon was learning their cooking secrets.
On his blog, Father Leo writes about his Bobby Flay challenge. He admits to saying, "O my Jesus," when he first saw the super chef. He also says that during the judging he even brought out his rosary. Let’s hope for the power of prayer.
Everyone is mum on the winner. The show is supposed to air sometime in August. I can’t wait to watch.